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Survey123 - Choices list

Question asked by mbrueningesi on Aug 17, 2018
Latest reply on Aug 17, 2018 by mbrueningesi



Quick question on the choices tab. Is it possible to have the following setup within the choices tab; please look carefully.


Notice that there are "dots" or "decimal points" within the "name" column within the sample above! Also, please note that this is within a functioning Survey123 form that has been used on one of my projects. I did not realize that I had inadvertently forgot to replace the "decimal" with an "underscore" prior to posting the survey for use.  According to this help documentation though; this should not be possible or am I miss interpreting the help documentation?


Here is the first portion of the help documentation below


Choices worksheet

This worksheet is used to specify the answer choices for multiple choice questions. Each row represents an answer choice. Answer choices with the same list name are considered part of a related set of choices and will appear together for a question. This also allows a set of choices to be reused for multiple questions (for example, yes/no questions).

The choices worksheet has three mandatory columns: list name, name, and label.

  • The list name column lets you group together a set of related answer choices. Choices with the same list name will be presented as the set of answers for a question.
  • The name column specifies the value that will be persisted in ArcGIS when that choice is chosen. Values in the name column do not accept special characters.
  • The label column shows the answer choice exactly as you want it to appear on the form. Alternatively, label translation columns can be used.

One thing to keep in mind when authoring forms in Excel is that the syntax you use must be precise. For example, if you write Choices or choice instead of choices, the form won’t work.


Here is the information that is contained within the link for "special characters"

Special characters

These characters can't be used in the name of a question, or in the name field for a choice list.

Special characterName









Forward slash


Dollar sign




Opening parenthesis


Closing parenthesis


My survey should not be usable according to the help documentation, but it worked perfectly on a project that we completed this summer. However, I am getting ready to re-purpose this survey for use on another project that starts next week. I don't want to assume that the survey is "ok" to use and have issues with the form once my field crews start to use the form.


I have the opinion of making the edit for switching the "dot/decimal point" within the values of the "name" column to an "underscore" and thing should be good to go.


Any information would be greatly appreciated.

ismael chivite james tedrick